Migraine Suffers at Work – Action Steps That Make a Difference!

March 23, 2023
by Gable Holderness, MSN, APNP

Migraines can be a debilitating condition affecting millions worldwide. People that suffer from migraine are affected not only at home but in their work environments as well.

Due to restrictions at work or lack of understanding of this debilitating disease, migraines often cause significant problems in the workplace. Fortunately, there are a number of interventions that can help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines, allowing sufferers to remain productive and successfully perform their job roles.

Implementing a Flexible Work Schedule:

One of the most effective interventions for migraines in the workplace is a flexible work schedule. By allowing employees to adjust their hours and work from home, you can reduce stress and minimize the triggers that can lead to migraines. This is especially important for those people who suffer from light or noise sensitivity, as they may find it difficult to work in a brightly lit or noisy office.

Adjusting Light:

When working from the office is the only option, adjusting the lighting may help those migraine suffers whom are photosensitive. Dimming, or better yet, removing fluorescent lights while bringing in more natural light is key. If adjusting the light over their work space isn’t possible, consider light filtering glasses to dim light without affecting neighboring employees.

Offer Ergonomic Equipment and Supplies:

Providing ergonomic equipment and supplies, such as adjustable chairs and standing desks, can also help reduce the frequency and severity of migraines. Adjusting computer screen height so that the top line is at eye level is a relatively easy and inexpensive intervention. Ergonomic equipment can help to reduce stress on the neck, back, shoulders, and improve posture, all of which can help prevent a headache before it even starts.

Encourage Physical Activity:

Physical activity is an important intervention for migraines, as it can help reduce stress and improve circulation. Encouraging employees to take regular breaks for physical activity, such as stretching or walking, can help prevent headaches and reduce symptoms. For an added bonus – walk outside to get fresh air and take in some vitamin D!

While migraines are debilitating to the individual, they in turn can also disrupt productivity in the workplace. However, by implementing flexible work schedules, adjusting lighting, providing education and resources, offering ergonomic equipment and supplies, and encouraging physical activity – employers can help support employees with migraine. By taking these actions along with offering compassion, employers can minimize the impact this condition has on the workplace.

Mind+ Neurology, a specialized headache and migraine clinic, offers walk-in Urgent Care for immediate rescue from severe migraine attacks. The newly built clinic is located at 12200 Corporate Parkway, Suite 400, Mequon, WI 53092. As an independent practice, no referral is needed. Mind+ Neurology is accepting new patients. Go to mindplusclinic.com to schedule an appointment today!